Spanish is the Language of My Family

A picture of the cover of spanish is the language of my family.

Spanish is the Language of My Family (2023)
Author: Michael Genhart, Illustrator: John Parra
Publisher: Holiday House / Neal Porter Books, Age: 4 to 8

An intergenerational story of family ties, cultural pride, and spelling bee victory following a young boy who bonds with his beloved abuela over a love of Spanish.

As a boy prepares for his school’s Spanish spelling bee, he asks his grandmother for help with some of the words he doesn’t know how to spell yet. When she studies with him, she tells him how different things were back when she was a girl, when she was only allowed to speak English in school. This only inspires him to study even harder and make his family proud.

Based on stories author Michael Genhart heard from his mother as a child, Spanish is the Language of My Family is about the joy of sharing cultural heritage with our families, inspired by the generations of Latino people were punished for speaking Spanish and the many ways new generations are rejuvenating the language..

Michael Genhart’s text is as touching as it is poignant, and it’s paired with the striking artwork of multiple Pura Belpre Award-Winning Illustrator John Parra. Extensive material at the back of the book includes essays from the author about the history of Spanish suppression in U.S. schools and information about the Spanish alphabet.

"Tenderly tremendous."—Kirkus, Starred Review

"...significant glimpse into one child’s claiming of their heritage."—Publishers Weekly, Starred Review

"A powerful picture book that accessibly educates readers about linguistic discrimination and cultural resistance."—School Library Journal, Starred Review

"...highlights the love between a grandson and his abuela through their connection with the Spanish language."—The Horn Book, Starred Review

"A beautifully designed read-aloud that celebrates the importance of knowing more than one language, while also shedding light on what first-generation immigrants went through to make that possible today."—School Library Journal, Starred Review

"A touching intergenerational story about a grandmother and grandson who bond over their love of their home language that evokes deep feelings of joy and pride in cultural and linguistic heritage. Parra's visually striking artwork uses bold colors and lines to create a backdrop full of visual context clues and cultural representation."—Booklist, Starred Review

"...offering storytime providers an opportunity to speak about cultural appreciation and engage with children about languages their families speak"—Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books

Tomás Rivera Mexican American Children's Book Award 2024
The 2024 Américas Award Honor Book - CLASP
ALA Booklist Editors' Choice Best Books for Youth of 2023
SCBWI Golden Kite Award for Picture Book Text Finalist
Kirkus Best Books of the Year 2023 List
Junior Library Guild Gold Standard Selection
The Horn Book: Fanfare 2023 "Best of list" Picture Books
CSMCL's Best Multicultural Books of 2023
Tejas Star Reading List 2024
Bank Street: Best Spanish Language Picture Book List 2024
Chicago Public Library’s Best of the Best List 2023
Los Angeles Public Library, Best of 2023: Children's Books
Tomás Rivera Mexican American Children’s Book Award 2024 Finalist
Jane Addams Children's Book Award 2024 Finalist in the Picture Book
California Independent Booksellers Alliance, Golden Poppy Award Finalist
Children's Choice Award Nominee, Washington Library Association
PR From The Heart’s Top Empowering Reads For Kids 2023
Common Sense Media, Best Books of the Year: 2023 List
NY Society of Illustrators, Original Art Show Selection
"Five Star Selection" Common Sense Media
"Starred Review" Publishers Weekly
"Starred Review" Kirkus Review
"Starred Review" The Horn Book
"Starred Review" School Library Journal (English Edition)
"Starred Review" School Library Journal (Spanish Edition)
"Starred Review" Booklist

ORDER: Amazon, Bookshop, B&N, Indiebound, Target
Additional Languages: Amazon (Spanish Text)

MEDIA: Activity Sheet (English), Activity Sheet (Spanish), Apple Books, Book Trailer, Coloring Page, Goodreads, etc.